Thursday, July 16
Psalm 37: 1-7
Psalm 37 speaks to that age-old problem of why – why do the wicked prosper, and why not me? The Psalm relates that yes sometimes the wicked do prosper and the good guys do suffer. This doesn’t seem fair and it does appear that nice guys finish last, but do they really?
Today’s thought is going to focus on some of David’s thoughts in the first seven verses of this Psalm.
The very first words of this Psalm are “Don’t fret.” The term “don’t fret” implies more than just a simple concern. David is talking about getting all worked up over a situation and letting that worry turn into full blown jealousy. We can’t always control what thoughts pop into our heads that cause us worry, but we can control what we dwell on.
Verse three tells us about the best weapon we have against worry – trust. I would never suggest that trusting in God will guarantee that our worries will simply go away or that our prayers will be answered exactly like we want. But, we can trust in the knowledge that God is beside us in all our worries. Read Matthew 6: 25-34 to find out what Jesus had to say about worry. In the book of Acts we read in chapter 16: 23-26 an account of Paul and Silas in jail. If ever there was a time to worry this would be one of them. Instead of being worried, Paul and Silas were singing praises to God and preaching the word.
The verse goes on to say that not only are we to trust in the Lord but we are to do good. Trusting God is not just a lifestyle, it is an action. Yikes, trusting is hard enough but doing good implies loving my neighbour who just may well be one of those guys who isn’t good but seems to get all the breaks. Not an easy concept is it?
Verse four tells us to “delight in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.” Wait a minute, I’ve been a good Christian for many years but I don’t have everything I want, what’s David talking about? The term ‘delight” here is to make God our highest joy and if we do that the desires of our heart become to do God’s will. I read an article about Mother Teresa where she stated that she did what she did, not because it was what she wanted to do, but it was what God wanted her to do. That is an example of somebody who truly delighted in the Lord.
Verse five is even more tricky. “Commit” your way to the Lord. We all know that any relationship, in order to be successful, requires commitment. David is telling us we need to commit and trust in the Lord. This means seeking God’s presence, placing our problems in his hands and leaving them there for God to deal with in His own way and in His own timing.
Verse seven tells us to “Be still.” Here David is telling us that once we have told God all of our problems, we need to sit with Him in silence. How often do we pray “God help me” and then just rush off to fix the problem ourselves? Sitting in silence gives us the opportunity to listen to God.
None of the above is easy. Not worrying, trusting, doing good, delighting, committing and being still are all attitudes that God will bless and use to His glory. Who says nice guys can’t finish first?
God, help us to be still and know that you are God. Help us to be willing to listen so that the desires of our hearts are in harmony with your will. May we truly trust you and give our worries and cares to you and not be tempted to take them back. Give us patience to be faithful in seeking your kingdom, that we may come to share in the inheritance of your saints, through Jesus Christ our Saviour. Amen.